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Thursday Night Football: Chicago Bears (46) @ Green Bay Packers (-8)

Chicago Bears
Chicago Bears 
O/U :4616.7

Date: 2016-10-20
Time: 19:25:00

Generated from 20 Previous Games

Green Bay Packers
Green Bay Packers
26.32 = 43.02

Today’s Pick: Chicago Bears +8

Welcome to Thursday Night Football.

Today’s breakdown and analysis will begin with injuries. Both of these teams are so riddled with lineup injuries throughout the season, that it’s very difficult to quantify how badly it will affect their play tonight, but when we parse out the recent injuries and the significant injuries, we see that the comparison is not really a major consideration:

Chicago Bears Injuries:

Out is WR Eddie Royal – 29 receptions this season, 2 TDs across,  338 yrds.

Questionable is ILB Freeman with 53 Tackles.

Questionable is TE Zach Miller with 31 receptions averaging 8.5 yards.

Questionable is CB Tracy Porter with 20 tackles and 2 interceptions.

Green Bay Packers Injuries:

Out is RB Eddie Lacy with 71 carries averaging 5.1 yards.

Doubtful is WR Davante Adams with 15 receptions averaging 14.5 yrds

Taking snaps for the Bears tonight is Brian Hoyer. Hoyer has thrown 0 interceptions in his last 3 outings, and has thrown for 6 TDs and has chalked up 1,396 yards so far this season. In the past few seasons, Hoyer hasn’t done very well when forced out of the pocket, but the Packers’ pass rush definitely leaves something to be desired this season anyway, so this shouldn’t factor into the equation to any large extent. With that said, this will be the Bears’ first real test in a few weeks.

The critical angle, the bankable aspect that we’ve diagnosed here, without a doubt, is the sheer value that Chicago’s 1-5 ATS, and 1-5 ML record gives us. Chicago is notoriously overlooked in the NFL, and usually rightfully so (just look at their record); however, in the 2016 season their pass game is actually 4th best in the league! It is rare to see any teams with a top 5 off/def that sit with a 20% WL track record. So something has got to give here, and they have the air game to make it happen.

Behind the Center for Green Bay tonight will be Aaron Rodgers. Rodgers has thrown 4 interceptions so far, but the concerning part is that 3 of them were in the past two games. In both instances (DAL and NYG) they were up against bottom 10 pass defense. Is Rodgers going through some things or is the Packers’ defense somehow disorganized? It’s a little bit unclear where the breakdown is occurring; but, with Rogers being rated far below average across his last 2 games, we wouldn’t be surprised to see more of the same. We sense it’s a QB issue. With Chicago starving for another win, Rodgers will have to navigate Chicago’s top 10 air-defense and mid-fare ground def.

The one thing that Green Bay has in it’s favor is that they do boast the 2nd best ground defense in the league; however, with the Bears sitting 23rd in the league in rushing, it’s not really an area that the Bears show strength anyway.

Where the Bears do show strength, again, is their top 4 pass-game being pitted up against the Packers’ shoddy ’21st in league’ pass-defense.

With Brian Hoyer up against an ‘at-best’ luke warm Aaron Rodgers, we suspect that Hoyer will be able to air mail plenty of chain movement, while Rodgers struggles to put something back together that we haven’t seen in weeks. Maybe Rodgers starts finding his rhythm late in the 4th Q to mount a “too little too late” pseudo-comeback…but we definitely like the Bears to cover the +8 spread and we’d recommend them as a 1H prop as well.